Archives: 'Hardware'

ROCCAT Kone[+] Scroll Wheel glitch

Sunday, March 4th, 2012

In the last few months the scroll wheel has started to play up on my ROCCAT Kone[+].  When scrolling up or down the mouse sometimes scrolls in the opposite direction briefly before correcting itself and scrolling in the right direction. The problem got worse and worse until I seriously considered throwing it away. Essentially the scroll wheel stopped being usable.

Of the two “fixes”, one made things slightly better for literally about 5 minutes (blowing air into the gaps around the scroll wheel) and the other wasn’t something I wanted to try with a mouse this expensive (spraying WD40 into the scroll wheel). There are many videos on YouTube showing the glitch in action.

Thankfully ROCCAT listened to their customers and at the end of October 2011 released a new driver/firmware pack (Driver v1.49 / Firmware v1.45) that so far has fixed the problem:
http://www.roccat.org/Support/Gaming-Mice/ROCCAT-Kone-/

The release notes are:
– Optimized scroll wheel behavior
– Minor bug fixes

It’s now March 2012 so I expect lots of people have found this fix already but I can confirm that the scroll wheel glitch is fixed.  My Kone[+] was experiencing the issue immediately before I upgraded.  Immediately after the upgrade I have been unable to reproduce the scroll glitch despite trying hard.

I would recommend this driver/firmware combo to everyone experiencing this issue.

 

UPDATE: This fixed the problem for about a week.  The scroll wheel is now as bad as before.  This has to be related to physical attributes of the wheel that the firmware adjusted the first time around (sensitivity to dust perhaps?).

Upgrading the HP Proliant ML115 G5 from Dual to Quad Core

Friday, October 28th, 2011

I bought an HP Proliant ML115 G5 servers just before they were upgraded to include a quad core CPU.  I’ve been running VMware ESXi 4.0 and 4.1 on it without any issues, mainly due to the fact that I also bought an HP SC44Ge Raid Controller and an Intel Pro 1000 NIC (Gigabit, as the name implies).

Although it’s running quite happily I wanted to max out the spec of the box in order to have the option of hosting more VMs.  The CPU it shipped with was an AMD Opteron 1214, a 64bit dual core CPU running at 2.2GHz.  I was doing a little reading up after I bought the server and several news sites suggested that it might be possible to install a quad core Opteron 135x CPU.  At the time the quad cores had only just been released and so I didn’t pursue the idea.  Fast forward several years to the present day (28th October 2011) and the Opteron 135x CPU’s are now becoming hard to find; eBay has several sources but all in the US (I’m UK based).

Anyway, to cut the story short I ended up ordering a second hand (used) AMD Opteron 1356 2.3GHz quad core CPU from a source in the US for the grand total of £25 including delivery to the UK.

To prepare for the CPU upgrade I knew I also had to upgrade the firmware on the server.  The machine is physically capable of accepting the CPU but the firmware won’t know what it is unless it’s told.  So, looking on HP’s support site I found the latest firmware, version 2009.07.06 (A) (29 Jul 2009 in Softpaq SP44683 available here.

Also of note is the recommendation from HP: “***Please Note: BMC Firmware version 3.11 or later must be installed on the ML115 G5 when upgrading to this 07/06/2009 BIOS.”  You’ll definitely want to download load the Baseboard Management Controller (BMC) firmware in Softpaq SP44085 from this page.  You’ll note that the firmware is for the Lights-Out 100 Remote Management card, which you may or may not have installed (it’s not a standard feature AFAIK).  It doesn’t matter.  What’s important is that this firmware package also includes the BMC firmware you’re going to need.

In order to upgrade the firmware you’ll need a USB memory stick and to have set up the BIOS on the ML115 to allow booting from USB devices.  Once you’ve done that simply run the ML115 firmware update package (SP44683) and it will do everything necessary to turn your memory stick into a bootable device.  Put the USB stick into the server, reboot it and the firmware package will do the updating for you.

On rebooting the server you’ll notice that the fan will continue running at what sounds like full speed.  This is why HP recommended you also update the BMC firmware at the same time.  Simply repeat the firmware flashing process by running the second firmware package (SP44085) to create another bootable USB device with the BMC firmware on it, reboot the server with the USB stick in the machine and let the updater do its thing.  Reboot one more time and the fans will return to normal speed.

Finally, for anyone with the SC44Ge Raid controller the latest firmware appears to be version “06.18.05.00 (1.23.43.00A) (3 Sep 2009)” in Softpaq SP45154 available here.

One final suggestion: remember to check the BIOS settings after flashing the firmware.  Although my settings were preserved between firmware versions your mileage may vary.

ROCCAT Kone[+] Firmware Install Problems

Saturday, October 1st, 2011

So.  I paid nearly £70 for a ROCCAT Kone[+] mouse and it arrived with the base firmware (v1.19) installed.

That’s not too surprising and as the mouse drivers also come with the firmware I thought the best thing to do was to grab the latest drivers (driver v1.48, firmware v1.43) from the website (http://www.roccat.org/Support/Gaming-Mice/ROCCAT-Kone-/) and install them.

Windows 7 prompted me to allow the ROCCAT firmware updater to have special access to my machine, which I allowed.  I was asked to click “OK” to update the mouse with the latest firmware.  I clicked “OK” and after only a short period was presented with an error message saying that the firmware update failed.

After a lot of trial and error I solved the problem by downloading the next version on from the version installed in my mouse.  I already had firmware v1.19 so I downloaded firmware v1.20 (http://www.roccat.org/file_driver_356_88dd28c1ae41233d1c8f416c16f15195) and installed the mouse driver then ran the firmware updater again.  This time it installed the firmware without problem.

I then downloaded firmware version v1.30 (http://www.roccat.org/file_driver_395_88dd28c1ae41233d1c8f416c16f15195) and tried updating to that version.  Again it worked fine!

Lastly I downloaded and installed driver v1.48 that comes with firmware v1.43 (http://www.roccat.org/file_driver_480_88dd28c1ae41233d1c8f416c16f15195) and this time the installation of the firmware was successful!  It’s a really painful way to update the firmware but I got there in the end.

With firmware v1.19 and driver v 1.48 I also experienced problems with the ROCCAT Talk application not working and with the lights on the mouse not responding to changes made in the control panel.  I’ve put this down to a mismatch of drivers and firmware that has since been resolved by upgrading to the latest of both using the method described above.

UPDATE:

I’ve since been told by the chap that runs pcGameware (Hi James!) that the Driver v1.44/Firmware v1.39 package installs the firmware perfectly on top of firmware v1.19 so that could be a quick way to fixing your problems.  Link here: pcGameware Review of Roccat Kone[+]